eSim, how “virtual” smartphone cards work. Guide to the advantages and offers of Italian operators

eSim, how “virtual” smartphone cards work.  Guide to the advantages and offers of Italian operators


Little by little even Italian operators are becoming friends with eSim, virtual SIMs that allow us to easily have multiple numbers and multiple tariff plans on the same smartphone.

Operators like Iliad they are improving their eSim offer and even the “old2 operators, so far reluctant to embrace this innovation, are starting to be less rigid. In short, it is possible, now more than a few months ago, to consider the possibility of bringing your main number to eSim or add another one – or an extra fee – this way, without changing your smartphone.

What are eSims and their advantages

We remember that eSims are installed by loading a QrCode into the mobile phone’s memory, using a photo camera, an operation that has now become very common with restaurant menus. They are more convenient and more environmentally friendly than physical SIMs. To activate a second number on your smartphone we do not have to change the SIM or have a dual-SIM. Virtual SIMs also offer greater security, precisely because they cannot be physically removed from the device, and allow easy management of multiple accounts or phone numbers on a single device.

The eSim can be moved easilywith an exchange of codes, even between one smartphone and another.

This opens up many possibilities. For example, it is easier to manage the private number and the number used for work separately. We can instantly switch to a tariff from a different operator from the main one in case of special needs, such as the use of smartphones abroad with a cheaper rate. Or we can activate an additional package of low-cost GB on the eSim, which can be used if necessary, perhaps even to share them with a computer or TV; and at the same time – on the physical SIM or another eSim – keep our main operator with whom we are happy in terms of network coverage and quality of general services.

Now, all operators have eSIMs, which are also compatible with almost all mobile phones released in recent years. Unfortunately, however, it still happens that certain models of “minor” brands, despite being compatible with the eSim due to official technical specifications, are not supported by some operators.

eSim offers

The situation, as we said, is improving.

For a few days Iliad has greatly expanded the number of smartphones compatible with eSim. Iliad is a common choice to combine with eSims due to the low rates and the many GB included. It has now added Apple models from the iPhone 15 range (iPhone 15, iPhone 15 Plus, iPhone 15 Pro, iPhone 15 Pro Max), Google Pixel 7A, Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro, Honor 90, Motorola Razr40 Ultra and Razr40, Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 5G and Galaxy Z Fold 5 5G, Xiaomi 13T 5G and Xiaomi 13T Pro 5G. The Honor and Motorola brands were previously not supported at all.

A virtual SIM has no production and shipping costs, compared to a physical one. However, operators tend to charge the same, with some exceptions.

Iliad allows existing customers to upgrade to an eSim for free. For new ones it asks for 9.99 euros but only if the offer is combined with a monthly fee lower than this figure.

Another operator that lends itself well to use with eSim is Spusu, virtual on the WindTre network. On the site it writes that it accepts all smartphones compatible with this technology. The activation cost is 9.90 euros for new customers, free for those who are already with Spusu and want to switch to eSim.

Iliad and Spusu allow you to activate an eSim (for new and old customers) even online, with convenience.

It should not be surprising that eSims are especially loved by smaller operators: they are in fact also a powerful tool for easy rate changes; Traditional operators, who have many customers, have more to lose than new entrants.

We will therefore find less advantageous and more inconvenient conditions on the eSims of large operators.

Tim and Vodafone they allow only new customers to have an eSim online by choosing this option (instead of the physical SIM) during the activation phase. Instead, you have to go to a store to move your offer and number already active with the operator to eSim.

WindThree he always asks to go to a shop.

Costs range from 10 to 15 euros depending on the operation (new eSim or switches) and the operator (with Tim, Vodafone or WindTre), except for temporary discounts. Vodafone, for example, now does not charge for SIMs in general for those who activate an online offer. Tim supports Apple, Samsung, Xiaomi, Motorola, Huawei and Oppo. WindTre also adds Honor and Google to these brands (according to what can be read on their respective websites). Vodafone does not publish the list.

WindTre was the only operator that used disposable QrCode, ergo if we deleted the offer profile from the smartphone or bought a new one we were forced to go to the store and pay 15 euros again for the eSim replacement. Unjustifiable stakes and taxes, which fortunately WindTre eliminated last year. Now even your QrCodes are reusable. The first good news that comes from the large operators, for the use of eSim.



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